Regardless of how old children may be, one of the goals of our Next Gen team is to help parents take the lead in the discipleship of their families. There are so many different ways parents can approach this calling and we love seeing and hearing how many parents here at Gateway are faithfully leading their kids to love and follow Jesus. During any given week, we know there are parents at Gateway…
using our weekly Take It Home resource to read and discuss the upcoming weekend’s Bible lesson with their kids
cultivating a discipline and routine of daily Bible reading by using age appropriate Bibles (like the Jesus Storybook Bible, The Adventure Bible or The Action Bible) at dinner or bedtime
modeling the Bible’s command to “serve one another” by serving regularly during weekend services, sometimes alongside their older kids
teaching their kids how to worship by sitting together as a family in “big church,” then allowing their kids to participate in Kidway while mom and dad serve
hiding God’s Word in the hearts of their children by working to memorize Scripture together
modeling the discipline of confession by honestly admitting their shortcomings and asking forgiveness from their kids
catechizing their kids (more on this in a few months, but a great resource to use for catechism is the New City Catechism book or app)
teaching their kids to pray
Teaching kids to pray is perhaps one of the best (and easiest) places to start if you are new to the idea of discipling kids, and we’re excited to offer a brand new resource in our Parent Resource displays this fall. Some of the reasons we love this resource are because it teaches kids how to pray directly using Scripture, it allows them to personalize their prayers in a simple way, and it is so easy to adapt depending on the age of your kids! One side of the card breaks Psalm 103 into short sentence prayers exalting God for his greatness and thanking Him for who He is. Each prayer helps cultivate a spirit of gratitude toward God for all He is and has done on our behalf. The back of the card has prayers parents can use to help their children celebrate and express thanksgiving for specific ways they have seen God work within their own family. Some prayers, like “I am thankful for ____ that God gives us every day,” while some, like “I remember when we needed ____, and God provided ______,” may require more reflection from kids.
As we enter into a season of thanksgiving and gratitude, we encourage families to take time to point their kids toward the true Giver of all good things and we hope this resource can be a helpful tool to do that!